Bug 506381 - Flawed logrotate method
Flawed logrotate method
Product: Fedora
Classification: Fedora
Component: httpd (Show other bugs)
All Linux
low Severity high
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Assigned To: Joe Orton
Fedora Extras Quality Assurance
Depends On:
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Reported: 2009-06-16 22:20 EDT by JW
Modified: 2010-06-28 09:04 EDT (History)
4 users (show)

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Fixed In Version:
Doc Type: Bug Fix
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Last Closed: 2010-06-28 09:04:47 EDT
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Description JW 2009-06-16 22:20:14 EDT
Description of problem:
The installed logrotate entry (/etc/logrotate.d/httpd) can result in httpd writing to deleted log file with subsequent log entries being lost.

Version-Release number of selected component (if applicable):

How reproducible:
Difficult because can depend on how busy httpd is.

Steps to Reproduce:
1. wait for logrotate to rotate httpd log files
2. run: lsof -p`cat /var/run/httpd.pid`
Actual results:
Depending on unknown circumstances one might observer that httpd ends up still writing to deleted log files.  Consequently log entries will be lost. This is especially true if logrotate compresses the rotated files.

Expected results:
No log entries should be lost.

Additional info:
If one reads the apache manual (logs.html#rotation) one will learn that the proper way to rotate logs is to rename the logs, invoke "apachectl graceful" then sleep for a while, then compress the files. So ideally the logrotate script should appear something like this:

/var/log/http/*log {
        /sbin/service httpd graceful

The important line is the "delaycompress".  This means that the active log file will be renamed (and httpd might continue writing to it for some time) but no log entries will be lost.  The renamed log file will get compressed next invocation of logrotate by which time httpd will have completely switched over to the new log files.

Additionally it would be nice if the logrotate entry didn't use 'kill -HUP' but instead used existing /etc/rc.d/init.d/httpd script so that arcane application control methods are all confined to one place. However using "apache -k" or apachectl are not half as bad as using kill (and depending on assumptions about where httpd's pid can be located).
Comment 1 Joe Orton 2009-08-18 07:55:53 EDT
Thanks a lot for the report and analysis!  I've committed this change.
Comment 2 Bug Zapper 2010-04-27 11:00:13 EDT
This message is a reminder that Fedora 11 is nearing its end of life.
Approximately 30 (thirty) days from now Fedora will stop maintaining
and issuing updates for Fedora 11.  It is Fedora's policy to close all
bug reports from releases that are no longer maintained.  At that time
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Comment 3 Bug Zapper 2010-06-28 09:04:47 EDT
Fedora 11 changed to end-of-life (EOL) status on 2010-06-25. Fedora 11 is 
no longer maintained, which means that it will not receive any further 
security or bug fix updates. As a result we are closing this bug.

If you can reproduce this bug against a currently maintained version of 
Fedora please feel free to reopen this bug against that version.

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